My Love/Hate Relationship with Vancouver; A Cute Picture; a Reuben; and Who Could Ask for Anything More

So, as usual I did my homework and discovered the following:

Vancouver is a coastal city on the mainland of British Columbia, Canada. The estimated population of Vancouver in 2016 is 610,000, which makes it the 8th largest city in Canada. Canada’s most recent Census was taken in 2011, which recorded 603,502 residents of Vancouver. From 2006 to 2011, the City experienced 4.4% growth, which was a bit under Canada’s overall growth at 5.9%. The Greater Vancouver area has a population of more than 2.4 million, which makes it the third most populous metro area in Canada and the most populous in Western Canada. Vancouver is also the most densely populated city in Canada with more than 5,249 people per square kilometer (13,590/sq mi), and the 4th most densely populated city in North America. 74% of people in the Metropolitan Vancouver area live outside the city proper.

So, as we Canadians say: “There you go!” All rather fascinating, Vancouver is more populated that I thought and it seems we are quite squished, which is fine with me. Last week I was endlessly queuing – getting my health care card (more about that later.) I was chatting up the people next to me (as usual) and a man said of Vancouver that Pierre Burton famously opined that Vancouver was not a great city – it was a great place for a city but not a great city. How profound and true is that!

Everyone agrees that this city is corrupt but nobody seems to want to do anything about it, not even me. I once had ambitious plans but I have thought better of it. I am not going to run for mayor even though the current one is going to be long gone. I am old, I hate meetings and politicians. I did volunteer to help the owner of a food truck bring an action in small claim’s court against the city but she did not follow through – just as well. I am not real fond of court, pleadings and lawyers (even though I was one).

But let me speak of the love. I love Yaletown, where I live. It is close to everything and it has the best shops, grocery stores, dry cleaners and restaurants. The people are, by and large, quite polite and can be rather charming. Last night I had the most amazing experience – I went to the symphony. I went to the ticket office to find out about Tea and Trumpets and the woman was so incredibly helpful. She told me that there was a concert that very evening and the conductor was the new director of the symphony who will assume control next year. Then she sold me a ticket for a mere fifteen dollars and off I went. The Orpheum is only two blocks from my apartment – I do love a densely populated city where things are close at hand. There was Berlioz, there was Dvorak, there was Brahms. The conductor brought out the best in the orchestra it seemed to me. At the conclusion of the concert I was lucky enough to be speaking to two musicians and they agreed saying he does an excellent job of bringing people together, uniting the various musicians and their instruments. I clapped wildly and yelled: “Bravo! at the conclusion of the concert. Not the other Canadians, they clapped in tepid fashion, I guess thinking that they were being so sophisticated. Who knows? How dull! I made up for them. So I have the loudest laugh in all of Vancouver and I yell Bravo! louder than anyone. It is dirty work but somebody has to do it.

Then something unbelievable happened. An utter stranger said: “OH you are Alexis, I follow you on Instagram.” I practically fainted dead away. I am famous, I tell people that and it appears to be true. Moreover, the fame paid off. The rain came (would not you know) and she graciously had her cab drop me off at my nearby apartment and so I did not get wet. (Note to self: “Always carry an umbrella, stupid!) One can tell that it is going to be an incredible season next year at my friendly neighbourhood symphony. hahahaha Just a hop, skip and a jump away.

I am slowly assimilating. Just last week a young man came to dinner and taught me how to turn on my television. It was so handy but in the long run may prove destructive because now I can get Murdock Mysteries – as a matter of fact they are being fed into system on a daily basis. I am addicted to Murdock Mysteries – I love, love, love him. But so far I have got this obsession under control and only watch one a day. But if all of a sudden there are no more blogs, you will know what happened. I have succumbed to Murdock and I am prone on my sofa with the remote in hand.

I will now reveal another example of assimilation. I eavesdropped and learned that I could have a two for one – a British Columbia health plan card and a BC driver’s license. So I did it – turned in my California drivers license, answered a few questions and there you go! Now this is a miracle. The picture on my license is SO cute, it is even cuter than I am in real life. I was ecstatic and told all of the people standing in line and sitting on chairs that I had the CUTEST picture. It has not come in the mail yet but it will.

So I am assimilating very well. By in large, Chinese people do not. Proof? Every North American (and even European) city has a Chinatown. There is no Scotlandtown, no Norwaytown, no Albaniatown. no NewZealand town I rest my case as we lawyers say. I rather enjoyed San Francisco’s Chinatown so that is not the point. It is just a fact – it is not opinion and it is not prejudice. It is a fact.

The picture is the best Reuben sandwich in the city. That is what Dunn’s does say and it is definitely the most delicious Rueben I have ever eaten. Dunn’s is in Yaletown, a couple of blocks away. So I have the symphony, I have Dunn’s and I have a cute picture on my driver’s license. Who could ask for anything more? A guy I guess, but mostly they just get in the way.

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